ALEX De Minaur is set to return to the scene of his breakthrough tournament, with the Australian number one confirming he will play at the Brisbane International next month.
De Minaur burst onto the international tennis stage at Pat Rafter Arena as a wildcard in January when he defeated the then world No. 24 Milos Raonic on his way to a first ATP Tour level semifinal.
The 19-year-old was named the ATP Newcomer of the Year this month, after reaching two tour level finals and finishing runner-up at the ATP Next Gen Finals in Milan on Sunday.
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De Minaur used social media to announce he will start the 2019 season in Brisbane.
“I am really looking forward to being back in Brisbane. I have great memories of the tournament because it was the start of a sensational roll throughout 2018,” De Minaur said.
“The crowd really got behind me and I feel like Brisbane sparked the momentum of an incredible year. I want to come back and go even further this time.”
Brisbane International Tournament Director Cameron Pearson said he is happy to welcome De Minaur back to the event.
“Alex created so much excitement at the tournament in January when he beat Raonic as a wildcard. He used Brisbane as a springboard to a fantastic season and is now well established in the world’s top group of next generation players,” Pearson said.
De Minaur joins headline player world No.2 Rafael Nadal alongside past champions Nick Kyrgios, Andy Murray and Grigor Dimitrov as well as John Millman and Japanese sensation Kei Nishikori.
Four Grand Slam champions Samantha Stosur, world No.5 Naomi Osaka, world No.6 Sloane Stephens and world No.7 Petra Kvitova feature in one of the strongest women’s fields in the tournament’s history.